While it is 100 degrees here today, it has actually been pretty chilly recently. After a nasty surprise last month (a significant increase in our water rates), we decided with a few exceptions, there was not enough left over to make it worthwhile to keep the front yard garden going into the fall this year. Most of our harvests were done, and the extra month gives time for some extra soil amendments.

photo (2)


While we still need some more topsoil, this is the sheet mulching endorsed by the authors of Paradise Lot, which I just finished reading. (I’ll let you guess if we went full-on and followed their recommendation that human urine is a great nitrogen fixing agent). This had been on my amazon wish list since last September when a friend recommended it, but I hadn’t gotten around to reading it. I definitely wished I had read it sooner! It is more in line with the forest garden I was envisioning for the front yard (but ran out of time and energy for this year).

One of the authors of the book runs a nursery specializing in native edibles. I have been going crazy dreaming about the plants I will order when the catalogue for next year is available. Good King Henry? Sea Kale? Perennial Arugula? Sign me up. In fact, I legit signed up to order everything they stock next year by accident. Heres hoping that doesn’t count as an actual order.

In the mean time I registered for this permaculture workshop for next weekend to hopefully rein in my expectations so I don’t close next summer with my dad’s now famous head shake when he sees how much squash I overplanted.

It worked out well this year though, we had enough to give lots away. A nice neighbor returned the favor :

photo (3) (this is not a squash).

This is pumpkin chocolate tiramisu that I was delighted to receive from one of my donees. I guarantee I could not make this if I tried.

With the garden going to bed, the bees are winding down too. Friday I sent my conspicuously light hive home with my dad. There are a few more classes for bee school focusing on candy boards, and overwintering. My instructors were somewhat more optimistic than I was, but I wouldn’t say overly so. Moving them went well, there were no repeats of either the bees in my pants incident, or the driving a car full of bees mishap. We are going to try overwintering one hive on top of the other,  but have not settled on the divider yet as there were mixed reviews.

Finally, I have realized Snuffy no longer eats shoes, he only uses them to get my attention/get what he wants. Imagine my surprise when today he brought a bar of soap into the living room, set it down, and ate it entirely. I don’t know what he is trying to tell me, he swears like a sailor at the dog park? He finally tasted something he didn’t like? He’s a filthy animal? Unclear.

P.S. My epic feud with the milkman appears to have reached a truce so I may make some cheese around here again sometime soon.